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Restarting breastfeeding after a short break

(5 Posts)
SomewhereOver Wed 19-Apr-17 11:09:46

Has anyone had experience of stopping breastfeeding completely for a few weeks and then restarting again?

I'm currently BF my 5 month old and would like to continue. However during my pregnancy I found out that I carry the faulty BRCA2 gene which significantly increases my risk of breast cancer. I am eligible for (and have been advised to have) yearly MRI scans of my breasts to screen for and hopefully detect any early changes.

I couldn't have the MRI while pregnant and have been advised that as breastfeeding increases the density of breast tissue, I would need to wait 4-6 weeks after stopping BF to have the MRI now, so that any changes would show up properly on the scan.

My dilemma is that I am desperate to have the scan but don't feel ready to stop breastfeeding altogether.

Sorry for long post but has anyone restarted BF again in a similar situation and how easy was it?

Thank you!

bigmamapeach Wed 19-Apr-17 12:13:22

This is a really interesting question, I don't have any specific experience with what you ask about but you can try searching for bf advice on "relactation" on eg Kellymom or lll pages. I was advised that relactactation is easier if you have done a period of exclusive bf and if you it was established for a reasonable period of time (eg the longer you bf for, the easier to restart). Just wondering if it might be a topic to get specialist advice from your doctors- re the respective benefits to you of either, having the scan sooner, versus the benefits to you in reducing lifetime cancer risk, of continuing bf (e.g., accepting that relactation may not necessarily succeed). Perhaps they can help you weigh these up. Have you checked for independent confirmation of the advice that the scan can't be done while bf? Congrats on your baby and hope it is ok coming to terms with the genetic news. All the best

RedheadinCamelFlarge Wed 19-Apr-17 23:05:12

Breastfeeding Network may be able to help. Wendy Jones, their pharmacist, often advises on the safety of medications while feeding. Now obviously this isn't that but I'm sure this came up before... She/the BfN may be able to point you towards the relevant research as to whether you really have to wait for scans or not. Hope that helps a bit.

mummabearfoyrbabybears Wed 19-Apr-17 23:28:44

Get lots of advice from your GP, HV and maybe a breastfeeding councillor but I have a friend who didn't BF her first and when her second was born she didn't but when the baby was about 5 weeks he found her nipple and had a good feed. She continued exclusively BF until he was 9 months. He's three years old now and still feeds at night smile. After all four of mine I've felt I could restart up to 6 months after we stopped as I always had milk there. Maybe not good for a scan though. Good luck OP.

SomewhereOver Thu 20-Apr-17 22:21:49

Thanks for replies. Will have a good look at kellymom and Breastfeeding Network.

Bigmamapeach my GP is fab and has been helping me to try and weigh up the pros/cons but its got to the point that I just can't bear the thought that there could be something growing that I miss the chance to catch early.

Mummabear that's a lovely story about your friend. Brought a little happy tear to my eye!

Thanks again all smile

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